So, does Williams' calling out his unit help or hurt? For my money, it helps. I'd probably like to have seen it a week ago and in private (and it appears it was in private Saturday night), but overall his comments are probably those that echo what the players have been hearing from Coach Grantham for three weeks. And he was right.
Now, should he have called out specific players? I think that is a matter of team dynamics and the ability of those specific players to handle that kind of criticism. Based on what I've seen out of Christian Robinson over the years, I think he is absolutely strong enough, both as a player and team leader, to see Williams' comments for what they are. It appears Gilliard has handled it appropriately, as well.
I would expect (hope?) those players to take offense at it. It wasn't a compliment. We aren't playing YMCA football here. We are playing in the SEC. If you can't handle someone speaking their mind about the state of play of a defensive unit that has played soft, you are never going to be able to deal with smack talk from a smart ass SEC West offensive lineman in November. Or Pwn Wagers.
Obviously, I have definite opinions about it, but I'd be curious what you think.
-Defending Shawn Williams, Bernie's Dawg Blog